The Big Sandy Mountaineer -

Letter to the Editor


February 10, 2021

My Mimi was my dad’s mom. She was a feisty 5’1” woman who could fix a car, run a store, patch a tire, and bake the best Buttermilk Pie, Carrot Cake & Texas Sheet Cake you’ve ever tasted. And those were just her hobbies. She loved the Lord, and wasn’t afraid to share Him with you. Recently, with everything that’s been going on, I’ve been thinking about something she used to say to me, “Don’t be ugly.” Since many of you aren’t familiar with Texas-speak, this meant “don’t be hateful.” I’ve noticed that many of us are being hateful to each other. In July, I decided to give up on Facebook. The hurtful things that my friends were saying to each other over competing issues of the day were more than I could handle. Whether it’s on purpose or not, lumping each other into categories based on political affiliation, mask stances, race, economic standing, and all sorts of other things and then name-calling and shaming people for their views is wrong. We can disagree and still be CIVIL. We’ve lost a lot of civility as a country. We have so much in common as members of the human race, as people living during a pandemic, as citizens of this country, and most importantly-as members of God’s family. As Christians, we are called to be loving to one another. To be kind. To be gentle. We aren’t doing that. Speaking the truth in love doesn’t mean that you can hurt/injure/maim in the process. It means that we treat each other with respect for their humanness, which is, in turn, a respect for the Creator of all things. And it doesn’t stop with our personal conversations with others, we need to be diligent when we see it in our friends and families and in the people that represent us. I’ve watched in horror over the past few weeks at the things that people have said that have made it to the news headlines. We need to denounce the words of others when they are “being ugly.” We don’t have to agree with someone in order to be treated with respect. My earnest plea is for everyone to look inward and see if we are pursuing being kind to others. Are our words edifying or dismissive? Helpful or divisive? Loving or ugly? Proverbs 15:1 says, “A gentle answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger.” Be gentle with each other in these exceedingly difficult times. We all need to be shown kindness.

Jessica Siestema

Big Sandy, MT


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